Many a brand have been changing their logos of late. Some are well received, others are not. Just ask Gap, who had to revert back to their classic logo after fans and haters from the world over protested over the new (now no longer in use) logo.
Now Starbucks seem to be walking down the same road. The ubiquitous coffee house, so popular that two stores can be found on the same road, celebrates its 40th anniversary with a new logo. The image to adorn coffee cups and mugs is now a more simplistic green-and-white siren. Most importantly, it is missing the Starbucks name and the ‘coffee’ word that the brand owns in the mind of its consumers.
How will this go down with Starbucks lovers and haters? How will it bode with brand loyalty?
Laura Ries opines that Starbucks should not have dropped its brand name and the coffee word from its logo. Her rationale? The siren/mermaid is not a powerful visual for coffee and does not remind consumers of Starbucks. By not using the Starbucks name as often as they can and in every cup of coffee they churn out, Ries posits that Starbucks is slowly going to lose attention from the younger generation.
I used to be a Coffee Bean fanatic before switching allegiance to Starbucks, after discovering their Frappucinos. When I walk into a Starbucks or chance to pass by, my eye is always drawn to “Starbucks Coffee” rather than the siren/mermaid. I guess the siren doesn’t really matter to me. It could’ve been my neighbor’s dog on the storefront or cup and I wouldn’t have noticed the difference (I don’t pay much attention to my neighbour’s dog either).
Perhaps this piece by AP can help shed some light the reason behind the wordless new logo:
“Prior versions of the logo helped build Starbucks into one of the world’s best recognized brands, and the company felt it no longer needed to reinforce its name at every turn. The new wordless logo also is better suited to the company’s expansion beyond coffee into a wider array of business lines and into more international markets.”
I would still prefer to see the Starbucks name than a naked siren in stores, but if this is a signal that my favourite coffee place wants to do more than coffee, then we’ll just have to wait and see if their next move has anything to do with sirens and mermaids and the sea. Dory sandwich or a seaweed latte, anyone?